Nuclear and Atomic Weapons

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Exactly what is the Iran Deal, in simple terms? Also, what provisions did President Obama agree to with Iran, compared to what President Trump's provisions are of what he has or wants to change?

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What is often referred to as the “Iran nuclear deal” is called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The document, which was completed in July 2015, represents an agreement between Iran and the nations referred to as the P5+1: China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Later in July, the United Nations (UN) Security Council endorsed the agreement. The agreement includes the requirements by which Iran’s compliance with the nuclear-related terms of the agreement would be verified by International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The timeline included a number of target dates. As of the agreement’s Finalization Day, July 14, 2015, Iran was to begin providing the necessary information to the IAEA for the agency’s investigation into Iran’s past nuclear-weapon development activities.

The JCPOA includes a number of specific steps in the categories of Enrichment, Nuclear Stockpile, Fordow, Advanced Centrifuge Research and Development, and Arak Reactor. These steps were to commence on October 18, 2015. In addition, there are continued Monitoring and Verification Requirements over periods ranging from 10 to 25 years. The agreement also stipulates that for 25 years, the Joint Commission—composed of the P5+1 plus the European Union (EU) and Iran—would hold quarterly meetings to oversee the deal.

Furthermore, there are numerous provisions outlining the circumstances and procedures by which sanctions might again be put in place; these differ slightly for the UN, EU, and United States.

On May 8, 2018, the US’s withdrawal from the JCPOA was announced by President Trump, along with the reinstating of nuclear sanctions on Iran.

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